Nature Restoration Trust Awards Over $310,000 to California Fish and Wildlife Habitat Conservation Projects PG&E and National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Partnership Fosters Stewardship of California's Natural Resources
Release Date: May 29, 2008
Contact: PG&E External Communications (415) 973-5930
SAN FRANCISCO - The Nature Restoration Trust, a collaboration between Pacific Gas and Electric Company and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF), today announced it is donating over $310,000 in grants to 10 community organizations to foster stewardship of California's diverse wildlife and habitats. With these grants, PG&E and NFWF are renewing their successful program, which previously invested over $2 million in projects to conserve and enhance wildlife in habitat from Redding to Bakersfield.
"Conservation at the local level builds community connections to the land and is a solid, long-term investment in our natural resources," said Jeff Trandahl, executive director, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. "We are extremely proud to collaborate with PG&E and pleased that The Nature Restoration Trust is the newest member of NFWF's Five Star Restoration Program, which brings together diverse organizations to help restore America's streams and wetlands."
The Nature Restoration Trust brings together public and private resources to conserve and enhance the natural habitats of fish and wildlife. Major funding for the program comes from PG&E, which has committed $1 million over 2008-2010 to support projects throughout the company's northern and central California service area. In addition, federal funding of the program is provided by the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Office of Wetlands, Oceans and Watersheds, and in-kind contributions are made by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, EPA Region IX, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Restoration Center Southwest.
"Since this unique, public-private team was launched in 1999, it has helped advance critical habitat and wildlife restoration projects, while inspiring our youth to protect California's natural heritage for generations to come," said Ophelia Basgal, vice president of civic partnerships and community initiatives at PG&E. "PG&E is proud to be part of this creative program which empowers communities to restore native habitats in urban, suburban and rural areas."
Winning projects were ranked and selected by an Advisory Panel that included representatives from NOAA, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, EPA Region IX, PG&E and Foundation staff. Consideration for funding was based on hands-on experiential education opportunities, benefits to the resource, partnership with other organizations and geographical distribution in California - from coastal dunes and tidal marsh to Sierra streams.
The 2008 recipients of Nature Restoration Trust grants are:
|American Rivers||$31,500||Sediments & the Next Generation: Restoration & Education in Deer Creek
American Rivers will work with multiple partners and integrate their work in-field water quality monitoring, floodplain restoration along a Sierra stream, and historical and cultural research into local 7th - 12th grade curricula. High school students will partner with middle school students in an "Eco-Pal" program to jointly learn about a riverine system.
|Audubon California Landowner Stewardship Program||$40,000||Audubon Bobcat Ranch Oak Woodland CorridorAudubon California Landowner Stewardship project will re-establish an ecological connection between the Dry Creek tributaries and the main channel of Putah Creek while creating a viable wildway managed by local landowners. High school students will do restoration work to better learn about the connection between a healthy ecosystem and responsible stewardship of working landscapes.|
|Children's Discovery Museum of San Jose||$11,290||BioSITE SEED
The BioSITE (Students Investigating Their Environment) SEEDS program of Children's Discovery Museum of San Jose will work with the San Jose Unified School District, the Santa Clara Water District, and other entities to restore riparian habitat in the Guadalupe Watershed. Students will conduct vegetation surveys, remove invasives, re-plant appropriate natives, and collect data at three sites to measure the success of the project.
|Community Alliance with Family Farmers||$30,504||Enhancing Red-legged Frog Habitat at Serendipity Farms
Working with the Monterey Bay Aquarium and the Wild Farm Alliance, Community Alliance with Family Farmers will restore wetland and riparian habitat for the endangered red-legged frog and Carmel River steelhead trout and monitor water quality and vegetation on Department of Parks and Recreation land at Serendipity Farms. Students will learn principles of on-farm biodiversity conservation practices and benefits for wildlife.
|Friends of the Dunes||$38,800||Community-based Coastal Dune Restoration at Manila Dunes
Friends of the Dunes will develop a service learning curriculum for the Adopt-A-Dune education project and work with Humboldt county students, community volunteers, and the California Conservation Corps to restore 4 acres of coastal dune habitat at the Manila Dunes Recreation Area. Three rare plant species occur on the property: beach layia (Layia carnosa), dark eyed gila (Gilia millefoliata), and pink-sand verbena (Abronia umbellata ssp. Breviflora) and the endangered Humboldt Bay wallflower is expected to spread onto the property in the future as a result of increased suitable habitat created.
|Golden Gate Audubon Society||$20,000||Eco-Oakland Environmental Education Program
Golden Gate Audubon Society will provide experiential learning opportunities for Oakland children and their families to help restore critical marshlands at Martin Luther King, Jr. Regional Shoreline Park's wetland complex and additional riparian lands. The wetlands are a critical habitat for endangered California clapper rails and endangered brown pelicans and California least terns.
|Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy||$20,000||Mori Point Habitat Restoration
Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy will work with local youth and community groups to remove and control the spread of non-native plants and debris and revegetate with native plants near Pacifica on the coast to create and improve breeding and foraging habitat for the threatened California red-legged frog and endangered San Francisco garter snake.
|Round Valley Indian Tribes||$40,000||Mill Creek Enhancement Project
The Round Valley Indian Tribes will enhance instream and riparian conditions for salmon, steelhead, migratory birds, and sensitive species on nearly 2.5 miles of Mill Creek. Working with the tribes, local schools will incorporate the project area into their "Adopt-A-Stream" program for hands-on learning experiences.
|Save the Bay||$40,000||San Francisquito Creek Restoration Project
Save the Bay will mobilize and train 750 middle school, high school, and community volunteers to revegetate and enhance tidal salt marsh and restore over 6 acres of critical habitat at the mouth of San Francisquito Creek in Palo Alto for the benefit of fish, shorebirds, and other wildlife.
|Urban Creeks Council||$39,573||Rheem Creek Restoration and Watershed Education Project
Urban Creeks Council will reach out to neighborhoods close to Contra Costa College to help restore native riparian habitat on Rheem Creek. The Council will establish a Watershed Curriculum at the college and provide stipends to 10 interns to design and install the project.
PG&E has a long history of making charitable grants tailored to the wide variety of needs of the communities it serves. The company's broader program of support to communities includes cash grants, in-kind contributions, and volunteers for community-based nonprofit organizations, and for schools and other governmental programs throughout northern and central California. All charitable contributions are entirely funded by PG&E Corporation shareholders and the level of charitable giving does not affect gas and electric rates.
Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation, is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric utilities in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with 20,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation's cleanest energy to 15 million people in northern and central California. For more information, visit www.pge.com.
A nonprofit established by Congress in 1984, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation sustains, restores and enhances the Nation's fish, wildlife, plants and habitats. Through leadership conservation investments with public and private partners, NFWF is dedicated to achieving maximum conservation impact by developing and applying best practices and innovative methods for measurable outcomes. Since its establishment, NFWF has awarded nearly 9,500 grants to over 3,000 organizations in the United States and abroad and leveraged - with its partners - more than $400 million in federal funds into more than $1.3 billion for on-the-ground conservation. For more information, visit www.nfwf.org.